A.I. Taking Over: Students, teachers and experts explain how ChatGPT is impacting learning

A.I. seems to be a topic everyone is talking about and its ability to write just about anything, from a book, to a recipe and even help students with an essay.
Published: Feb. 2, 2023 at 3:16 PM PST
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) - Artificial Intelligence seems to be a topic everyone is talking about and its ability to write just about anything, from a book, to a recipe and even help students with a college essay.

ChatGPT is a cutting-edge AI technology developed by OpenAI which uses deep learning to understand and respond to human language. It can be used in many fields such as chatbots, language translation and automated writing, making it a valuable tool for improving efficiency and communication in day-to-day life.

That description you just read about ChatGPT was actually generated by the program. I typed out the question of “write me a 15-secondond news story intro about ChatGPT and why it is an important tool for day-to-day life,” and that was the response it came up with.

ChatGPT is easy, accessible and allows you to ask detailed questions. Now, teachers, students and experts are weighing in on how they are using the chatbot.

The word rapidly spread to students about the new shiny tool.

ChatGPT in the classroom

“TikTok,” said a UNLV student who did not identify himself. “Social media. One person started talking about it and the potentials that it had and from there people found out what else you can do and examples of things it has done for them.”

Students on campuses like at UNLV have constant access to their laptops, smartphones and the internet and now ChatGPT.

“I have used it in my personal classwork already, so I see the potential it has to really become the resource for students,” said the UNLV student.

“You can ask it questions, it can respond, we can modify the questions and it comes off very very real,” said associate professor of educational technology at UNLV Kendall Hartley.

Hartley said this free natural language processing program is unlike any other.

“Definitely was hearing a lot of teachers complaining about students using it,” said teacher and research associate with the center for research and assessment at UNLV Rebecca Thomas.

Teachers like Thomas are now up against the advanced technology.

“Plagiarism detectors that teachers typically use, CCSD actually purchases one for us will not detect these, because they are not plagiarized, because they are unique generated texts,” said Thomas.

“ChatGPT, I can run the same text through that I know has been produced from online, from ChatGPT, run it in the plagiarism software and it gives you a percentage report,” said Hartley. “The report for ChatGPT is zero.”

This leaves educators with no choice but to think outside the box.

“Have your students use chatbot in class and look at what the chatbot wrote and say, ‘Hey look at what the chatbot wrote, is this right?’” said Thomas. “Tell me why or why not.”

Cities like Seattle, Los Angeles and New York are banning ChatGPT in some schools.

“You can limit what you can access from the school device that is usually using the school network,” said Hartley.

Thomas said even with banning ChatGPT on school networks and computers students will still find a way.

“If we can find ways to teach kids hey how is that working is it working,” said Thomas. “How can we improve it. I think that is a much better way than saying let’s just ban technology because we are not and that doesn’t serve students who are going to be in this technological world.”

Hartley said educators need a software that can detect when a student has used the chatbot, but with technology always evolving it is nearly impossible.

“There is going to be smart people who are going to be able to come up with tools that will help us be able to determine the probability that this was generated by an AI device and those will improve but anything that tries to run counter to that will improve as well,” said Hartley.

“I look forward to finding out what else it can do,” said the UNLV student.

People are excited about using ChatGPT for learning. It is often reliable but the danger is that you cannot tell when it’s wrong unless you already know the answer.

ChatGPT in the workplace

Both Hartley and Thomas said through research, they have already seen lawyers, coders, and marketers being replaced and expect this to become more and more common.

As of now, ChatGPT is free. However, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman tweeted on Dec. 4: “We will have to monetize it somehow at some point; the compute costs are eye-watering.”

This has proven to be true as the professional plan rolls out, estimating $42 per month.